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Quick story:

 

Bought a ASUS laptop last year for £700 from an online retailer. Out of the box all seems fine and shiny, notice something on the cover around the screen but not very noticeable; looked and felt like glue and dust residue from the protective film.

 

On the second week I went on a business trip with the computer and during the trip someone noticed that the 'something' were very minute scratches and not glue/dust residue. The computer also started to act funny, so as soon as I got back home I called the retailer about both issues (the laptop acting funny and the scratches) who passed me onto their repair agent and the laptop was sent for repairs.

 

The repair agent found an issue with the motherboard and that was covered by the manufacturer's warranty but the scratches were not. I discussed with the retailer but they insisted that I accepted and inspected the laptop in the 7 days given and if I did not spot the scratches then it is my problem.

 

What I have done now:

 

Since the retailer will not budge, I considered going to the small claims but instead I used Section 75 of the Consumers Protection Act with the credit card company I used. However, they have just replied back saying that no contract was broken...!?!?!

 

What I believe the law is:

 

Distance selling rules - I like the item and kept it after inspection period given, so no help here. But if the DSR period is over then the SOGA comes in to force.

 

Sale of Goods Act -

 

(1) The goods are 'faulty' and are not of satisfactory quality.

(2) The fault was discovered and realised within the first month, in fact, only two and half weeks so well within the 6 year period.

(3) I do not have to prove the fault was my doing as the goods were within 60 days - as I only wanted a repair.

 

The scratches are very minute and hard to spot on the glossy frame and you need to be really close to it and tilting it at an angle to actually see it let alone notice it, therefore it was ignored in the first instance. I asked the repair agents for a report of the scratches who also mentioned that the scratches were not 'noticeable unless you are looking for them'.

 

I wish to contact the credit card company once more before going to small claims, so I need help and practical advice. Please, please, please help me to find similar law cases, especially discovering faults after a time period.

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If the scratches are "very minute and hard to spot on the glossy frame and you need to be really close to it and tilting it at an angle..." why are you considering small claims court? Yes goods need to be free of minor defects and satisfactory quality takes into account appearance and finish but something you have to look for it seems like a waste of time unless your looking to use it as a reason to reject the goods for a refund?

 

If you do insist on continuing the below should help, copied and pasted from another appearance post to be sent to the retailer:

 

Under the Sales of Goods act 1979 (As amended) goods must conform to contract and be of a Satisfactory Quality as defined by S.14 of the act. This includes but is not limited to appearance and finish, as well as free from minor defects, per this definition the item does not conform to the sales contract. When determining the responsibility for determining the conformity of the goods at delivery, s.48A states: "... goods which do not conform to the contract of sale at any time within the period of six months starting with the date on which the goods were delivered to the buyer must be taken not to have so conformed at that date." as such the onus is on you to show that the goods were in deed delivered undamaged.

 

Due to this I require a resolution as outlined further on in the act by either replacement, repair or refund within a reasonable amount of time without significant inconvenience.

 

I expect a positive reply within 7 days, should this not be received I will have no option but to consider further action including reporting this incident to Trading Standards as a breech of my statutory rights.

Ex-Retail Manager who is happy to offer helpful advise in many consumer problems based on my retail experience. Any advise I do offer is my opinion and how I understand the law.

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Thank you very much blitz! I will use your suggestions in my letter.

 

The scratches actually run across the top of the frame a little so I am feeling really cheated that it is not perfect. Since now I have discovered what they really are, I seem to notice them more. My previous laptop, another expensive one, lasted over 5 years and I didn't even put a scratch on it - except when it returned for repairs; what I am try to say I guess is that I but the best and I treat them that way too.

 

Also, if anyone can help, please help me state some case law to support my position.

 

Many many thanks!!!:whoo:

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If you only went on the trip in the second week of ownership and reported the issue after that, I don't think you'll get them repaired free. How do they know you didn't do it?

 

I'd say anything up to 7 days is a reasonable time for inspection for a laptop.

By day, computer and mobile phone technical support... by night home mechanic and Rover / MG enthusiast!

 

Cars: 1998 Rover 620ti

Computers: HP nc8430 Business Notebook, Apple iPhone 3GS 16GB

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"If you only went on the trip in the second week of ownership and reported the issue after that, I don't think you'll get them repaired free. How do they know you didn't do it?"

 

I am quite sure, the burden of proof within the first six month is with the retailer and not the consumer. And even with six years if you can prove that the fault was a manufacturing issue.

 

"I'd say anything up to 7 days is a reasonable time for inspection for a laptop."

 

This comes to the reasonable man question: is it reasonable for the man on the street to see and identify those faults straight away and noting that I have a report from their official repair agents who says the scratches were not "noticeable unless you are looking for them".

 

Besides, if my understanding is correct, the DSR rule is only to establish a genuine contract so we do not have these people who order things and then send them back because they change their minds etc., but at the end of the day the SOGA overrides.

 

Please correct me if I am wrong as I need help in constructing a sound case. Many thanks! :smile:

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